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Why the hell do my feet always hurt?

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  • Why the hell do my feet always hurt?


    My feet hurt, all the time. I walk a lot and the bottoms of my feet ache like hell most of the time. Then it spreads to my knees. But mostly it is the soles of my feet.

    I have L3 L4 L5 herniated in my back and it is stiff and sore much of the time but thankfully sciatica is rare. I have torn and abused the meniscus and acl in both knees due to a variety of accidents. because of this, I dont run and walk slowly and I have a hard time lifting my feet enough sometimes.

    My work shoes are NB black leather walking shoes and I walk in good Keen sandals if the weather allows.

    I work on my feet all day and am always in pain. I am 100 lbs overweight and dropping and I know this is part of it but what can I do to keep walking and moving?

    what further questions do I need to ask as well?
    Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one actually.

    Join me at, where all the cavemen hang out.

  • #2
    Do you walk with your feet pointed straight forward? I used to walk with my feet pointed out slightly because it felt natural, but then I studied anatomy and physiology and realized how destructive that gait was. Once I trained my feet to point forward, my soles and knees hurt a lot less. And now my shoes wear down evenly instead of on the outside.

    Do you heel strike?

    Do you wear you shoes all the time or kick them off whenever you can? I find, even now, if I leave my shoes on too much my feet just get sore - presumably from all the moisture, but maybe just the constant pressure - or both.

    And never stand on just one leg, or lean to one side when standing. Try to keep even pressure on both feet as much as possible when standing.

    That's all I can think of for now. But yes, your feet will hurt less once the weight is gone. I only lost 50 pounds but it's made a HUGE difference. Oddly, I didn't note any significant change in my foot pain after dropping wheat. Other places, but not the feet.I think most of my foot pain was just my weight and bad mechanics.
    Crohn's, doing SCD


    • #3
      Your problem will probably improve as you lose weight, but even just a little bit of whole-body exercise to strengthen your back and leg muscles, may help to support your weight more evenly and put less stress on your joints. I am around ~100lbs overweight and have had bouts of sciatica, but I have found I have a lot less aches and pains since I started some (very gentle) jogging intervals. I don't stand all day though.

      As you stand all day I would say stick to exercise that won't add extra stress to your feet. E.g. swimming, floor exercises.
      Start weight: 238 lbs (March 2012)
      Current weight: 205 lbs (July 2012)
      Loss so far: 33 lbs!!!
      WOE: Primal + IF
      Movements: Hiking, sprinting.
      Goal: to see my abs some time in 2013!


      • #4
        Plantar Fasciitis? Have you tried stretching your calves?


        • #5
          Originally posted by Baba View Post
          Plantar Fasciitis? Have you tried stretching your calves?
          If it is something along these lines using a golf ball to roll out the fascia sometimes helps too.


          • #6
            I'll come at this from the side and ask have you totally given up gluten sources? My feet always hurt before I went gluten free and now it is very rare for them to do so.
            F 58 / 170cms / SW 131.5 kgs / Current 112.4/ GW 65
            following Primal Lifestyle and swimming my way to health

            My Primal Blog / Photo Blog / RedBubble shop / My Calendars / My Facebook


            • #7
              I am as close to 100% gluten/grain free as I can be. Stuff sneaks in when yer not looking but I do me best. I do daily stretches for lower back and legs or the muscles just all seem to try and roll up my lower back and hide. I also go barefoot or sandals as often as I can.
              Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one actually.

              Join me at, where all the cavemen hang out.


              • #8
                I think its just a matter of taking it slowly for you. You are coming at this from a position of being kind of banged up so to speak. You can't expect to turn that around in a month or two. It took you years to get to where you are. The good news is that you have definitely chosen a path that will get you there. You have done some serious damage there. The best you can hope for is significant improvement. Along the way you'll have to find ways around these injuries/aches/pains to make it work. As your body comp changes, I think that you'll feel better little by little. 100 lbs extra weight is a major stress on your knees and most certainly your feet.

                Are you doing any weight training? I ask because this is crucial in getting your metabolic system in order, thus making fat loss MUCH easier. Contrary to conventional wisdom/beliefs, "cardio" exercise is NOT anywhere near as effective as a good resistance training program. Add to that the fact that it is much less wearing on the joints (done properly) and its a no brainer. We're in this for the long haul man. Its not about doing as much as possible. Its about doing the exact right amount to improve your health and fitness and just as importantly, to maintain that for years and years to come. So in other words your "program" needs to be sustainable and safe in that it doesn't cause further damage over the long haul.


                • #9
                  Weight training? Hmmmm does working as a cabinet maker count? I move 100 lb sheets of melamine 20 times a day or more, picking them out of the racks, pushing them to the table and lifting them up on to the table. I push and drag and lift and lift down furniture up to 600 lbs ( sometimes with help when available) on a daily basis. The end of the day I feel like I have moved the world 6 inches over.
                  Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one actually.

                  Join me at, where all the cavemen hang out.


                  • #10
                    I have this deal called "atrophied fat pads" which means I don't have the right amount of cushioning on the bottom of my feet. So they hurt alot, and barefoot kills me.
                    It's common among diabetics (which I'm not, just lucky I guess).
                    I have noticed they hurt less since going paleo, and I'm even doing some barefoot walking.

                    But I think a trip to a good podiatrist would make sure you get the right diagnosis. There are orthotic options out there that help a lot as well. Also shoe choices has a lot to do with it.
                    "I did it for money and for a woman. I didn't get the money, and I didn't get the woman"